There’s nothing quite like cozying up next to the glowing warmth of an evening fire, sipping on rich hot chocolate, and diving into a good book. Memories of pumpkin carving, ghost stories, and gift giving circulate when taking in that first sip and reflecting into the flames. While there are many benefits to having an indoor fireplace, there are also some potential dangers. We’ve compiled five important safety points for avoiding a house fire this fall and winter.
Increase Fire Awareness
October has been dubbed National Fire Prevention Month. While fire safety should be a concern all year round, the onset of cooler weather is a great opportunity to brush up on your knowledge. Be proactive! Change the batteries in your fire alarm, set a testing schedule, and don’t forget hardwired detectors. With a few basic steps, you’ll be well on your way to increasing your fire safety awareness.
Take Fireplace Precautions
Curling up near a warm fire is a hallmark of autumn and winter, and while every type of fireplace is warm and cozy, each could be a potential danger to your family. Taking a few extra precautions could save you and your family from a serious emergency. Before you light the first fire of the season, ensure the chimney is in working order and doesn’t have any blockages that prevent smoke from escaping. Clear any additional smoke by keeping a window open when burning a fire, and always know where you keep your fire extinguisher and how to use it in case of emergency.
Maintain Your Home
It’s not all obvious! While candles, fireplaces, and stove tops pose a real threat, less noticeable hazards may be found around the home. Every home’s electrical system keeps the lights on and powers modern conveniences. However, improperly grounded receptacles, overloaded circuit breakers, and damaged insulation could all increase the risk of fire. Schedule a professional inspection if you are unsure of what to look for when searching for these hazards.
Have a Plan
When all else fails, make a plan for the worst-case scenario. Staying ahead of fire hazards is always a good idea, but having a backup strategy in place is essential to your family’s safety. Pick a spot outside where your family could meet in the event of a fire. Having a secondary escape plan is also a good idea. Remember to make it fun for the kids and practice frequently to ensure everyone knows what to do in the case of a real emergency.
Call the Professionals
Securing your home for the cooler seasons takes a lot of work, and keeping you and your family is safe should be your number one priority. Take fire safety seriously this fall. For more information or to schedule a home inspection, call Sherlock Home Inspectors at 712-274-9617.